tv CNN Presents CNN November 17, 2012 11:00pm-12:00am PST
installment. don't miss the live fight, pacquiao versus marquez 4 on hbo pay-per-view. this is the way jonestown looked the day it died, november 18, 1978. >> there was a degree of dignity. lay down your life with dignity. >> a self-proclaimed religious paradise in guyana in south america. carved out of the jungle by jim jones, a man who called himself god. >> how very much i've loved you. how very much i've tried my best to give you the good life.
>> who convinced his followers to kill their children and then kill themselves. >> let us be done with it. let's be done with the agony of it. >> drinking a kool-aid-type fruit punch laced with deadly cyanide. >> something to put you to rest. >> 30 years later, in a place where words could kill, and did, there is silence, an empty field, the people gone. almost no trace of their lives or dreams. this is the site of jonestown's open-air meeting hall where i'm standing right now, where the reverend jim jones led his followers into the worst mass murder and suicide pact in america's history.
only small golden flowers grow where bodies once lay. on that fateful morning there are more than 940 people living in jonestown. by nightfall only 33 would still be alive. for most of thfew who did survive, it took incredible courage to defy jim jones and step away. this is their story, one of desperation and daring and in the end a story of human triumph amid horrible tragedy. >> it was a slave camp ran by a mad man with a huge ego. >> as a young mother, leslie wilson went to guyana because her husband had taken their son there. in jonestown she found not enough food, not enough sleep, too much fear. >> for me to think i was going to see the age of 21 was a miracle. i didn't think i was going to see 21. >> she recoiled the first time jim jones called together peoples temple members for a suicide drill.
>> and i remember him looking at me and me looking, please don't ask me to do this, because we really didn't know if it was real or not. >> on the last morning she said she wanted to take her child on a picnic and started on a day-long trek to a town 30 miles away. >> everyone can look up and see us walking, and i was just shaking. i was so, so frightened. >> for years leslie wilson would not let anyone know she was a jonestown survivor. >> because i would sit at a table sometimes at work, whatever, and they would talk about jonestown, i didn't say a word. i mean, i lived under a veil of secrecy for 20-something years. >> vernon gosney, now a policeman in hawaii, remembers jonestown as an armed camp supposedly to guard against outsiders. >> but many of the times the guns were pointed towards us. >> gosney wanted to leave as
soon as he arrived but couldn't until a california congressman, leo ryan, came to guyana in the fall of '78 on a one-man investigative mission. >> i had decided i was going to pass a note asking for help to escape. >> by that next afternoon, as gosney dragged his trunk toward a departing truck, more than a dozen others had decided to go. >> i thought i was going to die at any moment. i never thought that i would ever be permitted to leave. >> when the group reached the small airport nearby, gunmen opened fire. >> there was blood everywhere, and i thought, i'm dying, and then i blacked out. >> that same day gerald parks, seen here in the blue and white shirt talking with jim jones, sensed it was his last chance to get his family out. >> you could feel death in the
air. you can actually feel it. >> the parks family asked to fly back with congressman ryan's group. >> and i told him who i was and i said, we've been held prisoner here. >> at the airport a tractor pulled a farm wagon up alongside their plane. >> about five or six guys stood up and pulled their guns up and started firing at us. i heard my mom holler, my god, look at patty. >> jerry parks' wife was killed. so was congressman ryan and three newsmen. parks ordered his daughter tracy, her older sister and three other youths to run for safety into the jungle. >> we ran too far, and, of course, it's so thick that like once you get so far you can't -- you get lost in your direction.
>> before night came we went back to the jungle and started hollering for the kids. and no response. and i thought, oh, my god, don't tell me they are lost. >> i was the organizer, and anything that needed organizing they gave to carter. >> tim carter, seen here in '78, was a trusted aide to jim jones. he saw jonestown through different eyes. >> it was beautiful. i mean, something about nature, being in the jungle, it was beautiful. >> carter stayed almost to the end. he saw the gunmen come back from the airport. >> the tractor trailer that had come from the airstrip came up behind and stopped at the kitchen, and these guys jumped
out. bob ky said, we got the congressman. >> that's when the reverend jim jones told his people this would be the day they'd have to die. >> the congressman is dead. please give the medication. it's simple. no convulsions with it. it's simple. just please get it. >> the children were killed first. >> tim carter saw his 1-year-old son poisoned. >> malcolm was dead, his little lips covered with foam. this is what happens with arsenic and cyanide as it foams at the mouth. >> he held his wife as she died. >> i put my arms around gloria as she was holding malcolm and just kept on sobbing, i love you so much, i love you so much. >> carter lived only because he was sent away on a final errand. he came close to shooting himself that night. >> and i knew that i would never get the sounds and the smells and the sights of jonestown out of my mind ever again.
>> so few survived jonestown. for most, only by determination borne of desperation. for others, by a twist of circumstance. over the next two hours we will follow the lives of these survivors, then and now. "escape from jonestown" continues. [ female announcer ] think you need to go to a department store counter for a professional cleansing device? join the counter revolution and switch to olay pro-x. get cleansing results as effective as a $200 system.
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the knowledge to go further in your career than you ever thought possible. let's get started at capella.edu the reverend jim jones left no doubt as to who he thought he was. >> when i say i'm god, then i feel it in my soul and i see the sick healed and the blind see and the dead raised. >> in truth, he was a liar, a charlatan, a phony faith healer. this from that same sermon in 1972 talking about a 90-year-old with a bad leg. >> his leg was healed instantaneously because he saw me as god, god, god, god, god! >> watch this woman who jones
said had a broken leg. >> you'll see her walk on this leg like it was never broken. >> a helper cuts through the cast. >> now the leg was broken yesterday? now run! >> jones asks if she feels any pain. >> jump up and drown real quick! no pain whatsoever. >> thank you. >> they traveled around the country and held these meetings and pulled these fake healings and fake miracles and people would shell out money like you wouldn't believe. >> this is jerry parks as he looked back then. he was fooled for years. >> but it was all through lies and fake healings and all that stuff. the man was fake. i know now that he was fake from beginning. >> by his own account, jim jones
was born on the wrong side of the tracks in a small indiana town in the depression years. at 21, jones became a student pastor by taking a correspondence course. within a few years he had started his own church in indianapolis, named it peoples temple and opened its doors to african-americans. he and his wife marcilyn became an interracial family through adoption and embraced racial harmony in an era that resisted it. but even then jones preached of catastrophe. >> at that time the cold war was going on and he was saying a bomb was going to fall and there would be a nuclear war. >> in the mid-'60s jones moved his church outside the town of ukiah in northern california. >> so he got this revelation somehow to come to ukiah, california.
there was a cave out here. >> a cave in the hills around redwood valley that would shield everyone from nuclear fallout. >> i know now as sure as i'm sitting here and i knew and have for a long time there was no such place. it was all one of his lies. jones built this church and offered sanctuary there, a safety net to the elderly and poor, usually blacks from the inner city. they signed over their social security checks and the people's temple cared for them for the rest of their lives. >> he built this whole thing on the premise of brotherhood, economic equality and a world where no babies go to bed hungry. >> jerry parks and his family followed jones from the midwest out to ukiah in 1966. jerry got a job in a supermarket. >> he started talking about everybody giving 25% of their income.
i sat down one time and figured after i got back how much money i gave that man, and it was around 76,000 bucks. >> his youngest daughter tracy learned to fear jones when she started school and was told to stay away from other children. >> if you got caught talking to people that were not affiliated with the church, then you would be in trouble for that. >> trouble at jim jones' wednesday night meetings. he called them catharsis, the purging of evil. >> so i was scared to do anything wrong because i was scared i was going to be called up and be beaten. >> leslie wilson was 13 when she first encountered the people's temple and the hold it had on members. >> what happened in catharsis? >> if you were doing something incorrectly, which nine times out of ten someone would find
something you did incorrectly, you would be called to the floor and disciplined? >> how? >> either by a paddle or being spanked. >> you were hit? >> uh-huh. >> in front of the whole church. >> oh, yes. >> grown people. >> yes. >> spanked? >> yes. >> who did the spanking? >> whoever he deemed to do it. >> her mother joined the people's temple as a haven where leslie's sister michelle, on the right, could get help for her drug problem. as a minister, leslie said, jim jones could be spellbinding. >> he could quote scripture and turn around and preach socialism. he appealed to anyone on any level at any time. >> even so, racial equality came with exceptions. >> the majority of the congregation was african-american. >> the people who ran the church, the leadership, were they majority african-american? >> no. they were majority caucasian. >> the dark side of jim jones was always there. >> what did you have to call him?
>> father. >> like he was god? >> correct. >> jones would boast openly in church about his sexual couplings with both women and men. >> for me sitting there listening to it, i thought it was insane, and i don't understand, soledad, when my mother didn't grab our hands and run like crazy when he spoke of having sex with men and women from the pulpit. i'll never understand what drove her not to have that question answered. >> just ahead -- rehearsing suicide. >> five minutes later jones says you've all just been poisoned. you have an hour to live. ne, olaf's pizza palace gets the most rewards of any small business credit card! pizza!!!!! [ garth ] olaf's small business earns 2% cash back on every purchase, every day! helium delivery. put it on my spark card! [ pop! ] [ garth ] why settle for less? great businesses deserve the most rewards!
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this is the people's temple membership, now numbering in the hundreds, in redwood valley california in the '70s. by then tim carter was already getting an early taste of how it would all end. >> we had a very small vineyard on the ranch in the valley, and they said, hey, grapes would come in from the ranch and they have wine, does anybody want some wine? and so each of us got this styrofoam cup with about three-quarters filled with wine and drank the wine. and like five minutes later, jones says, you've all just been poisoned. you have an hour to live. >> it was a test for jim jones' trusted inner circle. they did not panic or resist. >> now when i look back on that
whole thing now, you know, you think that might have been the wake-up call that it was time to get out of dodge? yeah, absolutely. that should have been. i should have been gone the next day. >> carter stayed on. he was a marine vet who survived some of the worst fighting in vietnam. he came home bitter, a cynic, a hippie, and joined the people's temple in 1973. that same year jim jones reached a deal in guyana to begin clearing land in the jungle for a future settlement he would call jonestown. jones chose guyana because its government was socialist, its people black and english-speaking. it is a small country, not even a million people, on the north coast of south america. >> beautiful promised land. >> beautiful promised land. those were jones' words for his
creation, a place where he and his people could practice socialism, live in harmony and answer only to themselves. >> we wanted to have a better world, you know, a better society, one without racism, sexism, ageism, economic equality for people. >> verne gosney joined the church in california about that same time. he and his wife, an interracial couple, were welcome. >> the people's temple was a rich tapestry of people. they were people who had survived adverse situations, racism, discrimination, just very difficult lives, and they had triumphed to that point. >> in 1975, jones moved his church headquarters from redwood valley down to san francisco to a larger stage where he became a political force and a face in photo-ops.
>> roslyn carter was campaigning for jimmy carter. i believe that was 1976. and there was going to be a rally downtown. literally, we stuffed the building. we were the rally. >> this photo of tim carter with the woman he loved, gloria, was taken at the golden gate bridge during another public appearance. >> when jim jones was asked to give the benediction for the new suicide prevention barrier that had been erected. >> that's right. only a year before jonestown took its own life, jim jones was praying over a suicide prevention barrier. in that summer of 1977, jones was facing increasing criticism from some members who fled the church because they no longer believed in jones. when "new west" magazine published an expose article
about church beatings, jim jones suddenly decided to leave the country. he began putting his flock on planes to south america by the dozens day after day. teenagers and young children were among the first to go. parents followed. >> i got this phone call that says, it's time for you to go. and this voice entered my head that said, if you don't go now, you will never see your child again. leslie wilson had become pregnant at 18. this is her son jakari. the father took the boy to guyana first so leslie followed. what was it like in guyana? beautiful? paradise? >> not paradise by any means. >> did it feel like you were in captivity? >> oh, right away, right away. your passports were taken right away, seized. >> and this did not raise red flags? or it did?
>> it did. well, you knew -- in your heart of hearts you had to know that there was no way out. there was no way out. ♪ welcome >> tim carter praised jonestown in this testimonial. >> it's beautiful. i can't -- i've never been so totally happy or fulfilled in my life. >> as long as he was not being eaten up by bugs. you could see him scratching the bites. these are home movies made by jim jones to attract church members to his namesake. >> american bananas are nothing like these. >> he showed off the supplies. >> flour, flour, rice, black-eyed peas. >> and then this. >> kool-aid.
>> kool-aid. the reality of jonestown? hard work, long hours, too much heat, too little sleep, and, as leslie wilson remembers, meager food. >> dinner was rice and gravy and sometimes soup with chicken feet sticking out. >> she wrote this letter to a friend there in jonestown. >> i now feel as if my whole being is worthless here. i am 21 years old and my life will surely consist of nothing more than it does now. >> at the bottom she wrote -- >> destroy this now. >> but at a wednesday catharsis meeting -- >> my letter was being read by jim in front of the whole congregation. and if i could have crawled in that guyanese soil and dug a hole so deep, i would have done it. i was just in fear. >> your best friend turned you in? >> my best friend turned me in. >> as punishment leslie was placed on a hard work detail.
for her the promised land was a failure. >> we were not going to make a difference in the world because no one knew about us. no one cared. we were just this bunch of folks living in the jungle surviving. >> the utopia was a hoax. >> it was a hoax. and that realization itself was >> the utopia was a hoax. >> it was a hoax. and that realization itself was overwhelming. when we return -- a secret plan to kill. >> cyanide is one of the most rapidly acting poisons. i would like to give about two grams to a large pig to see how effective our batch is. [ male announcer ] it's that time of year again.
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>> i'm don lemon with an update on your top story. israel inching closer to a ground war in gaza. 30,000 troops are mobilizing. for four days, israel has pounded gaza for air strikes, potentially sochbling up militants for an invasion. but hamas is hitting back, firing rockets at random into israel, hoping for a hit. israelis can only wait for this sound, a screeching siren warns of the rocket's approach. hamas' military wing says it shot down an israeli f-16 and other aircraft. israel denies losing aircraft. israel's military is using all of their weaponry at its disposal. here is a missile hit that
israel says is the home of a hamas leader. those are your headlines at this hour. i'm don lemon, keeping you informed. cnn, the most trusted name in news. as soon as jerry parks arrived at the entrance to jonestown in the spring of 1978 with his wife and youngest daughter, he saw guards with guns. >> i seen those armed guards. that's when my heart fell. i knew then -- i didn't have to wait until i got into jonestown. i knew then i'd made the biggest mistake of my life. >> reverend jim jones' home
movies helped lure parks and his family to guyana. >> it was going to be a city right in the middle of a jungle, made it sound like really a paradise. >> instead, he found -- >> hell on earth. >> jerry parks complained about the heat, the food, the confinement. >> life don't get any worse than that. that was literally a jungle prison. >> in front of the congregation jim jones told parks -- >> the only other thing you can do is either adjust or walk through the jungle and it's eat snakes and all that [ bleep ] and no one wants to do that. you can be arrested by police and be put in a federal penitentiary. >> jones would punish parks. >> he called me up front and he says, i hear you want to go back home, and he started beating on me. he had two, three security that were karate experts hammering on me pretty good.
>> parks was put on a hard work crew out in the hot sun digging ditches. in jonestown, even his 11-year-old daughter tracy parks got up for work before dawn each day. >> i had to work in the rice fields. you had to use a big machete or the big rake that had the knife at the bottom, and you had to cut the grass down. >> one day she went to the infirmary with an earache. >> and they looked in there and pulled out a cockroach the size of my -- half of my thumb. huge! >> tracy parks saw no future in jonestown. >> i knew that in the first month there, that i'm stuck here and that i'm most likely going to die here. >> verne gosney came a month after the parks. he brought his 4-year-old son mark. his wife had fallen into a coma
during childbirth and never came out. gosney sank into a haze of drugs. >> i did use heroin. i used amphetamines. i used cocaine, marijuana, lsd. >> he came to jonestown to get clean. and did. >> their idea of a drug treatment was, you know, work you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and if you mess up, beat your ass. i mean, that's their drug treatment program. >> he soon found jim jones controlled everything. >> it's a dictatorship. it was supposed to be socialism, but it really was fascism. >> jones' own words. >> this organization is built upon the dictatorship and i am god damn it, very much in control. >> most food had to be shipped in and jim jones had begun to talk about another move, to communist russia. ♪ long live this socialist dream ♪
>> that's beautiful. >> church members were told to learn a new language. >> you had to say something in russian before you could get anything to eat. little old ladies coming up, older people, elderly people, you know, they couldn't do it. they couldn't memorize anything, and he'd would turn them away. >> yet unknown to parks, unknown to gosney or anyone outside the inner circle, jones was already preparing for their death. this is a memo written to jones by the peoples temple doctor six months before the mass suicide. it reads in part -- >> cyanide is one of the most rapidly acting poisons. i would like to give about two grams to a large pig to see how effective our batch is. >> the test apparently was never carried out, but that's not the point. while in guyana we made a startling discovery.
the church had been buying cyanide long before most of the members arrived here in jonestown. cnn has learned that for at least two years the church was buying a quarter pound of the deadly poison each month. by the time congressman ryan first began raising questions about jonestown, six pounds or more of cyanide had already been shipped here. strong evidence that the reverend jim jones had been plotting the death of his followers long before that fateful day. we're told jonestown had obtained a jeweler's license to buy the cyanide, which can be used to clean gold, but there was no jewelry operation in jonestown. in that last year, jones never left the jungle camp, a prisoner of his own making hiding from a court custody fight over this young boy he claimed he sired by another man's wife. jones would summon his people to mass meetings they called white
nights and rant about suicide if under attack by the cia or the guyanese army or other known forces. >> if you are not prepared to die for your children, you will not stand up for your children. >> for months jones will tell parents their children might have to die. >> at some point you will sacrifice your children. you have to make that commitment. >> at one meeting jones tried to get jerry parks to promise to kill his daughter tracy if the camp were invaded. >> how old is your child? >> 11. >> we fight at 11. unless it came to an overwhelming invasion, then we would gently put them to sleep, which we have -- they'll never know what hit them. we've already prepared for that. >> and i thought, you know what, am i the only one in this cotton picking group that's got the guts to stand up and say, no, i don't want to commit suicide? >> from that moment on, jerry
parks said, he knew he had to get his family out. >> i knew them white nights he was having was fake at the time, but i also knew that one day one of them would not be fake. next -- running away from death. >> i was horrified. i was so, so scared. llo!!!! [ all ] ohh! that is crazy! are you kidding me? let me see! oh! what! that's insane! noooo! mr. woodson? oh hello! hello! [ whistles ] hello! [ all ] hello! [ coach ] caleb, i've got someone i want you to meet. hello. [ male announcer ] at&t. the nation's largest 4g network. covering 3,000 more 4g cities and towns than verizon. rethink possible.
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in mid-november 1978, congressman leo ryan flew to south america to see jonestown for himself. >> i'm from the united states government, and we're here to inquire into the health and the welfare of american citizens who are here. >> a number of ryan's california constituents were complaining that relatives were being held captive. his legal aide jackie speier who made the trip with ryan was worried about ryan's own safety. >> i placed his will, which i had custody of, in my top desk drawer. >> reverend jim jones was worried some of his followers might try to leave. he warned the members. >> see if you can make it to any railway. see if you can get to any passport. try. i dare you to try.
you don't know who you're talking to. just because i don't use the language of the turks, i am that which they call god. >> that audiotape, like many others, was found later in the radio room of jonestown, recovered by the fbi. >> i will see you in the grave, many of you. >> by now jones was deep into drugs himself. an autopsy would show so much bar bituate abuse it should have killed him. church member verne gosney. >> i do know what a person sounds like when they are very impaired from either drugs or alcohol, and he was. at one point he actually needed help walking. >> the day before congressman ryan arrived, jones said this. >> i've been wanting to shoot someone like him in the ass so bad for so long, i'm not passing up this opportunity. i don't care whether i see christmas or thanksgiving,
neither one. they don't either. >> when ryan entered jonestown that friday, leslie wilson was waiting for the first chance to run away. >> i remember going to the kitchen and grabbing a butcher knife and sticking it down the front of my pants. ♪ that's the way of the world >> jonestown put on a musical extravaganza that first night in this open-air pavilion. an nbc news camera team accompanied congressman ryan. you're watching their footage. >> i can tell you right now that the few conversations i've had with some of the folks here already this evening that whatever the comments are, there are some people here who believe that this is the best thing that ever happened to them in their whole life. >> the cheering lasted more than a minute. desperate to leave, verne gosney
mistook nbc reporter don harris in the blue for a ryan aide. >> i tucked a note in his elbow as he walked by, and the note dropped to the ground, and i picked it up and gave it back to him and told him, you dropped something. and a small boy then shouted, you know, he passed a note, he passed a note! >> it said, help us get out of jonestown. >> when i heard that i think verne gosney had passed a note that he wanted to leave, we were just like, oh, my god. >> as word spread, tension grew. time was running out on jonestown for all the children and everyone else. yet their last night on earth would end in song. ♪ no matter what they take from me they can't take away my dignity ♪
>> jones forced the reporters to leave and go back to the nearby town of port kaituma. ryan and his aide jackie speier spent the night in jonestown. >> and i was awake a good part of the night thinking, how quickly can we get out of here tomorrow? >> leslie wilson was thinking the same thing. a small group of black members hoped to walk out that next morning to go on a picnic, so they said, but at first her husband, joe wilson, seen here in yellow, a top security guard for jim jones, told her she could not take their son jakari. but then suddenly he handed the boy back to leslie. >> and we immediately started taking off. and so to say i was panicked is -- i was horrified. i was so, so scared. >> nine of them left. these five adults, plus three young daughters in one family and leslie's 3-year-old son.
>> and i started carrying him tied to a sheet on my back. >> they had to climb a hill in the open to leave. >> everyone can look up and see us walking. i was just shaking. i was so, so frightened. >> they heard a truck approaching as they reached the thick jungle near the entrance to the compound. >> we dove and hid the kids. diane who worked in the pharmacy had made -- this so ironic -- a cocktail of valium and kool-aid for the children to keep them calm. >> the truck was bringing the nbc crew and other reporters back to jonestown that saturday morning. >> actually we were so close to the guard shack that we could hear their voices and hear their conversation. the truck passed and leslie's group found the railroad tracks nearby that led to another town about 30 miles away. >> we had no clue if we were going to make it to the next town, if we were going to live, if we were going to die. but we knew we had to leave. >> that railroad is gone, ripped up.
the jungle reclaiming the route. all that remains is this railway bridge which leslie remembers with dread. >> i recall a bridge. i have a horrible fear of heights. horrible. and there was an area we had to cross. i just had to get on my hands and knees an cross it. i couldn't have stood up. just couldn't. >> look closely and you'll understand her fears. you can see straight through the railroad ties to the river below. >> she was really scared. i was scared, too. >> robert paul joined up with less lessry group just before that bridge crossing. he had been a security guard for jim jones and believed in jones until he got to guyana. >> he was so good, then all that evil came down. i thought i'd met god, but i met satan. >> paul and another man also left that morning.
the trek through the jungle was exhausting. for everyone. >> it was hard. it was hard. we was really tired. >> how difficult was the walk? carrying a child on your back? three other little kids? >> oh, it was a tough walk. but then, too, it wasn't -- it was a freedom walk. it was a walk to freedom. >> a passing train stopped and gave leslie's group, now 11 people in all, a ride over the last several miles. when they came to the end of the line in the town of matthew's ridge, suddenly they came face-to-face with more fear. >> we walk up to the police station, and then we have guns drawn on us. we don't know why. the captain proceeds to tell us there's been shootings in port kiytuma. coming up -- the last hours of congressman leo ryan and the reverend jim jones.
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you can feel death in the air. you can actually feel it. >> jerry parks had a sense saturday, november 18, 1978, would be his last day in jonestown, one way or another. >> i knew that we didn't have long. i knew that if we got out of there, it was going to have to be pretty quick. >> parks wanted his family to leave with the others who walked away that morning. >> i had clothes stash in a plastic bag down in the tall grass where i worked. >> but then he saw someone approaching it. >> i seen him pick up that bag and start walking. the first thing i thought was, oh, no, someone's turned us in. >> so his 64-year-old mother, edith parks, sought out
congressman ryan's aide jackie spier. tim carter, seen here, overheard the conversation. >> and edith parks walked up to jackie spiers and said, i'm being held prisoner here. i want to go home. >> this is jackie spiers walking back with edith parks to talk to the rest of the family. in this nbc video from that day. tim carter will never forget what a jones loyalist said to him. >> and he goes, well, it looks like we're all going to die. >> spiers tape-recorded a statement by the oldest daughter, brenda parks. >> what is your wish today? >> to go back home. >> and where is home? >> the u.s. >> jackie speier walked off to find jim jones. the woman she passed is patricia parks, jerry's wife, in the last
hours of her life. speier confronted jones with the defectors. >> he became agitated, tried to talk with them. he was sweating, beads of sweat on his face. >> jerry's youngest daughter tracy parks was confronted by jones' wife marceline. >> first off i thought, okay, this is it the day that i'm going to die. >> but marceline left tracy an opening to join her family. >> she said, you don't want to leave, do you? i said, if you take me to them, i'll talk them out of it. >> jerry parks faced down jim jones. >> i said, what the hell have you done for him beside hold my family prisoner here for 7 1/2 months? >> as jerry parks turned away -- >> i look over there. he's sitting on the bench and he's sitting there, a dejected beaten man. >> yet, another confrontation awaited jim jones when he sat down with nbc reporter don harris for an interview. >> last night someone came and passed me this note.
>> harris gave him vern gosney's note asking for help to go home. >> that's who we're talking about. he wants to leave his son here. >> in fact, vern gosney had to agree to leave his young son mark behind before jones would let him go. >> all decisions around my son i -- will, you know, haunt me for the rest of my life. >> jones raged at harris. >> people play games, friends. they lie, they lie. what kind of lies are you -- please leave us. i beg you, please leave us. we won't bother nobody. anybody that wants to get out of here, they can get out of here. they come and go all the time. i don't know what kind of game -- some people like publicity. i don't. >> the sky turned, the wind came up strong and it was just torrential rain.